Special Encounters

Special Encounters

The staff at the Alaska Zoo offers special encounters with animals in a behind-the-scenes setting. You can experience what it is like to see zoo animals through the eyes of those who care for them. 

Keeper Talks (June 1 through Labor Day, no additional charge beyond regular admission)

Keeper for a Day

  • Reserve or buy a gift certificate
  • Available September 1 through May 15
  • Description: Have you ever wanted to see what a zookeeper does all day? Spend a day with our keepers, one on one, from 10:00 AM until 3:00 PM. Change to a new zoo keeper ever hour while they show you what they do on a daily basis. You may go behind the scenes at tiger, brown bear, snow leopard, make diets, or feed the wolves. The day is always a surprise but a great experience for all.
  • $200.00 donation per person
  • Scheduled Monday through Wednesday
  • Fees are paid in advance of your scheduled encounter
  • Runs from 10am to 3pm several times a week
  • Program is offered to ages 12 and up
  • Ages 8 to 11 only with a PAID chaperone in attendance
  • Online reservations open from September 1 to May 15
  • For questions, contact Shannon Jensen (Curator), sjensen@alaskazoo.org

Animal Encounters

  • Available September 1 through May 15
  • Description: Choose between the wolves, seals, big cats or polar bears for your encounter.  Participate in making diets, providing enrichment, cleaning, and training alongside the animal's zookeeper.
  • $85.00 donation per person ages 12 and up
  • $45.00 donation per child age 11 and under with a paid adult
  • Fee includes admissions to the zoo
  • Fees are paid in advance of your scheduled encounter
  • Encounters are 45 minutes to 1 hour
  • Online reservations open from September 1 to May 15
  • For questions, contact Shannon Jensen (Curator), sjensen@alaskazoo.org

Alaska Zoo Tours

  • Available from September through May (not available in summer months during Discovery Tour season)
  • Description: Organize your family and friends and schedule an Alaska Zoo Tour today!
  • Tour lasts 1.5 hours and includes one behind-the-scenes stop
  • Minimum 5 people, no maximum
  • Cost is $15 per youth and $20 per adult (includes admission)
  • Passes are not accepted
  • Fees are paid upon the group's arrival for the tour at the admissions entrance
  • Must be scheduled in advance
  • Not available during summer months (June to August)
  • Contact our Outreach Coordinator at outreach@alaskazoo.org for more information

Discovery Tours

  • Available during summer months only, Memorial Day through Labor Day. Summer 2014 Discovery Tours begin on May 26th.
  • Description: Discovery Tours are great for both tourists and Alaska residents alike. Tours are daily during the summer season, starting May 26th, 2014 and ending on Labor Day.
  • Tour lasts 2 hours and includes two behind-the-scenes stops
  • Daily tour times are set from 12:15pm to 2:15pm
  • $20.00 per youth and $28.00 per adult (includes admission)
  • Open attendance, no reservations needed
  • Arrive at admissions any time before noon and pay for the tour at that time
  • Contact Stephanie Hartman (Education Director) at slhartman@alaskazoo.org for more information